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Dynamic 3D Printing Process Features Light-Driven Twist

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The mini Eiffel Tower.

Northwestern University engineers developed a method that uses light to improve three-dimensional printing speed and precision.

Credit: Northwestern University

Researchers at Northwestern University have a developed a three-dimensional (3D) printing technique that uses a liquid photopolymer activated by light and a high-precision robotic arm that allows each layer to be moved, rotated, or dilated as the structure is being built.

Said Northwestern's Cheng Sun, "Now we have a dynamic process that uses light to assemble all the layers but with a high degree of freedom to move each layer along the way.”

The continuous printing process allows 4,000 layers to be printed in about two minutes.

The researchers used their method to 3D-print a customized vascular stent, a soft pneumatic gripper made of one hard and one soft material, a double helix, and a mini Eiffel Tower.

From Northwestern McCormick School of Engineering
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